OKC Loud Links: Week Ends, Waiting for Actual News

As we wind down what has been a quiet week, it is interesting to see how the players have begun to branch out to continue to ply their trade. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't remember them taking such proactive steps in 1998. It could be a good thing.

Harden Knocks: OKC's High Stakes | ESPN

Adande writes that the Thunder stand to lose a great deal if there is no season. I think he's right in the sense that no team came out of the playoffs looking more like the future of the NBA than the Thunder. However, they're so ridiculously young that I can't see them at a greater risk than a team like Dallas.

Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant, and Pandanalysis | Hardwood Paroxysm

In case you ever wondered what would happen if Hubie Brown did color commentary on the interactions between Kevin Durant and a Panda, well, here you go.

Billy Hunter: From Patty Hearst to David Stern | Grantland

Abrams writes a great piece on the history of NBPA union head Billy Hunter. He has lived quite the life, and that is commendable. 

Q&A With Kevin Love | The Basketball Jones

Kevin Love gives a great Q&A where, among other things, he talks about his volleyball prowess:

Question: What has been the reaction of your friends and family?

Kevin Love: They're all laughing.

Killing Their Team | Wages of Wins 

Have you ever wondered which players hurt their teams the most? Wonder no more, my friends. The WoW guys have our backs.

More links after the jump.

CBA Talks to Resume on Monday | NewsOK

That's great, at least they can enjoy a nice weekend before they get back to work. Heh, work.

Why Bill Walton Was the Greatest Center of All Time | BBall Breakdown

Coach Nick digs into the archives of the 1977 Finals to examine Bill Walton's perfect play in helping Portland win its only championship. Now, I know that the clip is meant to highlight the beautiful basketball that those '77 Blazers played, and it was truly remarkable, but jump to about 2:17 in the clip. Dr. J, man. Dr. J.

Skill Rankings: Pick and Roll Ball Handlers | NBA Playbook

Pruiti ranks the best players on how well they handle the ball in a pick and roll situation. What I find interesting is that in the pick and roll set, Steve Nash and Hedo Turkaglu are as adept as anybody in the league, which means that athleticism is de-emphasized in favor of an understanding of the game and the patience to let the play work itself out.

Is It Time For a 20-Rule | Hoopsworld

On the negotiating table is the proposition to raise the minimum age of rookies to 20 years old. Here is a deeper examination on the implications of such a rule and whether or not the NBPA might pursue it.

Rogues of the Week: The Bosses | Behind the Basket

Gault too is recognizing the strange lack of urgency on the sides of both parties. 

Locked Out and On Tour | SB Nation

Could the players actually stage an exhibition tour across the U.S.? It would be difficult, but not impossible. 

NBDL Players to Play in Pan-Am Games | Ball Don't Lie

It was unlikely that the NBA players were going to suit up for the Pan-Am games, so that job will fall to the D-League players, which is a pretty good move in its own right. However, could this be a precursor to seeing those NBDL players go to the Olympics in the event that NBA action has not yet resumed?

Top 100: The Aftermath | Basketball Prospectus

The guys finished their top 100 college player countdown, and now they wrap it up with some discussion about the process and players as a whole.

On Reggie Lewis, Pop-Pop, and the Value of Growing Old | Celtics Town

Reggie Lewis, in case you're unfamiliar, was a bright young basketball player who played for the Celtics at the tail end of the Larry Bird era and was primed to carry them in the aftermath of the Lenny Bias tragedy. Lewis, and that legacy, tragically died as well. Here is one writer's compassionate look back at Lewis and how he sadly missed some of the best stuff out of life.

Stoudemire to Start Sports and Fashion Web Site | Ball Don't Lie

Amare Stoudemire has fully embraced the NY experience, and is apparently going to look to forward the link between forward fashion and the high sports lifestyle. Good for him, as long as I don't see any more of his ESPN Body photo shoots.

A One-Night Only Scrubtacular | Hardwood Paroxysm

Scrubs, those end of bench warmers who rarely see action, sometimes have career nights. Here is a retrospective on some of the most memorable.

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